WHILE STAYING AT HOME DURING COVID-19, CHILDREN’S DROWNING RISK MAY INCREASE

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Pediatricians urge families to add extra layers of protection to keep children safe around all sources of water in the home

ITASCA, IL (May 19, 2020) — The American Academy of Pediatrics is urging parents and other adults to plan multiple layers of protection to keep children and teens safe around water this spring and summer. This is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, as children spend more time at home with caregivers who may be distracted by work and other responsibilities.

“Drowning is the single leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 4, and it’s one of the top causes of death for teens. As children are at home more due to social isolation recommendations, they may have more access to pools, bathtubs, and other sources of water – all of which pose a drowning risk,” said pediatrician Ben Hoffman, MD, FAAP, chair of the AAP Council on Injury, Violence & Poison Prevention.

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WHILE STAYING AT HOME DURING COVID-19, CHILDREN’S DROWNING RISK MAY INCREASE

Pediatricians urge families to add extra layers of protection to keep children safe around all sources of water in the home

ITASCA, IL (May 19, 2020) — The American Academy of Pediatrics is urging parents and other adults to plan multiple layers of protection to keep children and teens safe around water this spring and summer. This is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, as children spend more time at home with caregivers who may be distracted by work and other responsibilities.

“Drowning is the single leading cause of death for children ages 1 to 4, and it’s one of the top causes of death for teens. As children are at home more due to social isolation recommendations, they may have more access to pools, bathtubs, and other sources of water – all of which pose a drowning risk,” said pediatrician Ben Hoffman, MD, FAAP, chair of the AAP Council on Injury, Violence & Poison Prevention.

“Families may also be visiting lakes, rivers or other open bodies of water as a way to get outdoors while still maintaining physical distance to reduce the spread of coronavirus. We have to make sure that we plan layers of protection to keep children and teens safe around water, wherever they are,” Dr. Hoffman said.

In this video package, AAP offers b-roll to illustrate fencing and other pool barriers, life jackets and boating safety, swimming lessons, and close supervision. Dr. Hoffman offers soundbites explaining drowning risks for various ages and demographics, unique considerations during the pandemic, and the steps AAP recommends parents take to keep children safe.

For an interview with Dr. Hoffman or with a pediatrician in your state, contact AAP Media Relations Manager Lisa Black at 630-626-6084, or at lblack@aap.org.

According to the AAP, the layers of protection should include:
• All children and adults should learn to swim. If swim lessons are suspended in your area due to coronavirus, it is important to add other layers of protection until your child can access lessons.
• Close, constant, attentive supervision around water is important. Assign an adult ‘water watcher,’ who should not be distracted by work, socializing, or chores.
• Around the house, empty all buckets, bathtubs and wading pools immediately after use. If you have young children, keep the bathroom door closed, and use toilet locks to prevent access.
• Pools should be surrounded by a four-sided fence, with a self-closing and self-latching gate. Research shows pool fencing can reduce drowning risk by 50%. Additional barriers can include door locks, window locks, pool covers and pool alarms.
• Adults and older children should learn CPR.
• Everyone, children and adults, should wear US Coast Guard-approved life jackets whenever they are in open water, or on watercraft.
• Parents and teens should understand how using alcohol and drugs increases the risk of drowning while swimming or boating.

“We can’t drown-proof kids, and so planning layers of protection is the best way to protect all children around water,” Dr. Hoffman said.

This year, AAP is continuing its water safety campaign with four new public service announcements describing how to protect toddlers and teens around water. The PSAs are available in both English and Spanish. AAP is also making available a series of PSAs featuring the first-person stories of Bode and Morgan Miller, and Nicole Hughes, who lost children to drowning and have partnered with AAP to share their stories to help save other children.

For more AAP resources on drowning prevention, visit aap.org/drowning.

TV PSAs Click to load and view in player

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Toddler Drowning Prevention :30 TV PSA
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Toddler Drowning Prevention :30 Spanish TV PSA
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Teen Drowning Prevention :30 TV PSA
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Teen Drowning Prevention :30 Spanish TV PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :30 Drowning Prevention TV PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :15 Drowning Prevention TV PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :60 Drowning Prevention TV PSA
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Nicole Hughes :30 Drowning Prevention TV PSA
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Nicole Hughes :15 Drowning Prevention TV PSA
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Nicole Hughes :60 Drowning Prevention TV PSA

Radio PSAs Click to load and view in player

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Toddler Drowning Prevention :30 Radio PSA
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Toddler Drowning Prevention :30 Spanish Radio PSA
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Teen Drowning Prevention :30 Radio PSA
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Teen Drowning Prevention :30 Spanish Radio PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :30 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :15 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA
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Bode & Morgan Miller :60 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA
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Nicole Hughes :30 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA
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Nicole Hughes :15 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA
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Nicole Hughes :60 Drowning Prevention Radio PSA

Web Banners Click to download image

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Drowning Prevention Web Banner Ad 1 160 x 600
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Drowning Prevention Web Banner Ad 1 728 x 90
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Drowning Prevention Web Banner Ad 2 160 x 600
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Drowning Prevention Web Banner Ad 2 728 x 90

Interviews Click to load and view in player

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Swim Lessons
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Inflatable or Temporary Pools
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Life Jackets/Open Water
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Supervision
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Bathtime Safety
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Layers of Protection
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Children of Color Drowning Rates
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When to Start Swim Lessons
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What to look for in Swim Lessons
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Teen Drowning Rates
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Best Life Jacket to buy
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Backyard Pool Protection
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Drowning Rates Children Ages 1 to 4
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Rules for Water Watchers
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Role of Inflatables in Water Safety

B-Roll Click to load and view in player

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B-Roll: Bathtub Safety
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B-Roll Inflatable or Temporary Pools
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B-Roll: Swim Lessons
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B-Roll: Barriers
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B-Roll: Parent Supervision
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B-Roll: Life Vests
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B-Roll: Water Activities

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American Academy of Pediatrics Logo

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